Ponderosa Group Campground

vault toilets and picnic shelters in campground
Ponderosa Campground has picnic shelters and vault toilets.

Photo by Sally King


Ponderosa Group Campground is located 6 miles from the park's main entrance on NM Hwy 4 and is an ideal place to stay for larger groups visiting Bandelier National Monument. The campground is home to two group campsites that can accommodate groups of 10-50 people each and is just a short drive from the park visitor center, the Frijoles Canyon Shuttle system (mid-May to mid-October), and the town of Los Alamos, Valles Caldera National Preserve, Manhattan Project National Historic Site, and the Santa Fe National Forest. The Ponderosa Trail Head sits in the campground providing easy access to more than 70 miles of hiking trails. Ponderosa Campground is located at 7600ft elevation and is open year-round (water is only available from mid-May to mid-October).

Group campsites are $50/night and are available by advanced reservation only. Same day reservations are not permitted. Demand for campsites is high. Reservations can be made up to 12 months in advance through Recreation.gov.
steller's jay
Steller's Jay are frequent campground thieves, so don't leave food out for them to steal.

Photo by Sally King

Campground Amenities and Regulations
-Check-in time is 4:00pm. Check-out time is 11:30am.
-Vault toilets (with no running water), drinking water, a picnic shelter, picnic tables, food lockers, and campfire rings are provided at each campsite. Water is not available mid-October through mid-May.
-Campsites are tent only and are limited to no more than 50 people and 5 vehicles. Only 1 RV, trailer, or pop-up camper is permitted at each site. No hookups are available.
-Day-use of the picnic tables and shelter is from 11:30am-4:00-pm. ONLY if no group is currently using the space under their reservation.
-Public events are prohibited at Ponderosa Campground. Private events that adhere to campsite capacity limits, may be permitted after obtaining a special use permit. For information on special park use permitting, call (505) 672-3861 x 1102.
-The use of all vehicles (including bicycles and trailers) is restricted to the parking area. All vehicles belonging to campers must be parked in the campground parking area -- NOT in the trailhead parking area. Vehicles parked in the trailhead parking area after dark without a backcountry permit will be ticketed.
-Collection of live, dead, or downed wood is prohibited. Firewood is provided by the Friends of Bandelier and available to campers for a donation of $1/stick. Wood is located next to the vault toilets.
-Pets are allowed in the campground but must be kept on a leash at all times and are not allowed on any park trails.
-Bears and other wildlife are active in the area. All food must be secured when not cooking or eating. Campsites must be kept clean.
-Quiet hours are from 10:00pm to 6:00am. Generators may be used only from 8:00am to 8:00pm.
-Camp host is present during summer months.

Basic Information

Accessibility Information

Last updated: October 1, 2023

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

Bandelier National Monument
15 Entrance Road

Los Alamos, NM 87544


505 672-3861 x0

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